The Canadian Hearing Society hosted its first “Understanding Your Hearing” presentation on Friday at the Mosaic Centre, which is located at the Bayview Avenue headquarters of the CNIB, an agency serving vision-impaired Canadians.
The Mosaic Home Care Centre provides home care services and support for people in the community. The idea for the hearing event came when Jane Teasdale, principal of Mosaic Home Care Centre, spoke with the Canadian Hearing Society about how it could help those in the East York community who want to learn more about hearing loss.
Audiologist Maria Michaelides, spoke at the event.
“Forty per cent of seniors over the age of 60 have hearing loss, and every decade after, the prevalence continues to increase significantly,” she said. “Early intervention is best, especially if you have any concerns with your hearing.”
The presentation covered the various causes of hearing loss — and its symptoms. Those include: tinnitus (ringing) in one or both ears; asking to repeat things frequently; using one particular ear while using the telephone; and difficulty hearing close conversation in situations involving considerable background sound.
The three types of hearing loss are conductive loss, sensorineural and mixed hearing. Conductive loss is caused by impairment of the outer ear, ear canal or eardrum. Sensorineural effects are sensitive to loud noises, trauma, or hearing loss running in the family. Mixed hearing loss is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
But some effective technologies have been developed to help the hearing impaired. Jo-Ann Bentley is the director of the communications devices program at the Canadian Hearing Society. She said that, for instance, some hearing aids can be helpful in the case of an emergency in one’s own home.
“Imagine the smoke alarm ringing in the night. Are you sure you will hear the alarm?” she asked. With new products, she added, you can: “If the smoke alarm is activated, a loud, low-frequency sound is emitted and a pillow shaker will vibrate to alert someone to the danger of smoke.”
The Canadian Hearing Society will begin hearing loss clinics in February at the Mosaic Home Care Centre.